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would appear as well from the paintings as from their being much prized in other countries. Historians state that horses were exclusively used for war and luxury; and the paintings confirm this testimony, the horse being never represented as employed in any kind of agricultural labour. The ultimate neglect of the horse in Egypt is easily accounted for. In the declining state of that country, the warriors, being discouraged, gradually forgot their former habits and the tastes connected with them; and as the horse was exclusively used by this class of the population, the cultivators, who had themselves no use for the animal, ceased to interest themselves in its reproduction, or in the improvement or preservation of the breed. (See Goguet, Origine des Lois; Heeren, Egyptiens;' Raynier, Economie Publique et Rurale des Egyptiens,' &c.)
21." The LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. 22 And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left."-We have quoted this text at length, in order to mark the distinctness with which every circumstance is enumerated to demonstrate the miraculous character of this event, and to preclude any attempt to account for it on natural causes. The terms seem purposely intended to guard against any possible natural hypothesis, which might be or has been adduced. The natural operation of any wind could only have driven back the water from the extremity of the gulf, and even this could not be effected by an east wind, which, however, was the best calculated, under the Divine direction, to strike a passage through the gulf; but no wind, not even an east wind, could do this in the terms described, without an extraordinary exhibition of the Divine power. And that the waters were not simply driven back from the head of the gulf, either by a wind, or by an extraordinary fall of the tide, is shown by this-that the waters could not then be divided, but only driven back, nor could then the waters have been a wall to them on the right hand and on the left, but only on the right. And that they did not pass merely at a ford--that is, on a shallow place, or ledge of rocks-as some conjecture, is evinced as well by the express statement that they passed on dry land, as from the difficulty of supposing that, encumbered as they were with children, flocks, and herds, with a hostile army on their rear, they could have got through even a small depth of water. We have examined the whole subject with great attention, and our decided conviction is, that there is no possibility of accounting for the circumstance on any natural cause which is commonly assigned, without either explaining away the force and obvious meaning of this and the other passages of Scripture which refer to the same event, or else rejecting the testimony of Scripture altogether. We really do not see any other alternative. It seems to us that there is no Old Testament miracle more independent of natural causes than this. It is true that the natural agency of an east wind was employed; but it is obvious that the natural operation alone of any wind could not have produced this result; and if it could, the miracle remains-the wind being made to come at the moment, and to blow as long as it was wanted, and to cease at the critical time when its cessation involved the Egyptian host in destruction. In fact, the east wind itself is a miracle. There is no such thing as a natural east wind in all this region. The monsoon blows steadily from the north during one half the year, and from the opposite point in the other half. That the event altogether had no resemblance to any phenomenon which the Red Sea exhibited at other times, is evinced by the incidental but unequivocal acknowledgment of the neighbouring nations (see the texts referred to in the note to chap. xiii. 20), and by the astonishment and alarm which it inspired. Its effect upon the Hebrews themselves equally proves the miraculous character of the transaction. When they saw the "great work" which the Lord had done to seal their redemption from Egypt, they believed in Him; and in after times its stupendous and undoubted character occasioned their successive historians, prophets, poets, and didactic writers, more frequently to refer to this miracle than to any other of the extraordinary manifestations of Divine power which the Old Testament records.
1 Moses' song. 22 The people want water. 23 The waters at Marah are bitter. 25 A tree sweeteneth them. 27 At Elim are twelve wells, and seventy palm trees.
THEN sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spake, saying, I will sing unto the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.
2 The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father's God, and I will exalt him.
3 The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.
4 Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.
5 The depths have covered them: they sank into the bottom as a stone.
6 Thy right hand, O LORD, is become glorious in power: thy right hand, O LORD, hath dashed in pieces the enemy.
7 And in the greatness of thine excellency thou hast overthrown them that rose
up against thee: thou sentest forth thy wrath, which consumed them as stubble.
8 And with the blast of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as an heap, and the depth were congealed in the heart of the sea.
9 The enemy said, I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; my lust shall be satisfied upon them; I will draw my sword, my hand shall 'destroy them.
10 Thou didst blow with thy wind, the sea covered them: they sank as lead in the mighty waters.
Il Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the 'gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?
12 Thou stretchedst out thy right hand, the earth swallowed them.
13 Thou in thy mercy hast led forth the people which thou hast redeemed: thou hast guided them in thy strength unto thy holy habitation.
14 The people shall hear, and be afraid: sorrow shall take hold on the inhabitants of Palestina.
15 Then the dukes of Edom shall be
1 Wisd. 10. 20. 2 Or, repossess. 3 Or, mighty ones. 4 Deut. 2. 25. Josh, 2, 9.
amazed; the mighty men of Moab, trembling shall take hold upon them; all the inhabitants of Canaan shall melt away.
16 Fear and dread shall fall upon them; by the greatness of thine arm they shall be as still as a stone; till thy people pass over, O LORD, till the people pass over, which thou hast purchased.
17 Thou shalt bring them in, and plant them in the mountain of thine inheritance, in the place, O LORD, which thou hast made for thee to dwell in, in the Sanctuary, O LORD, which thy hands have established,
18 The LORD shall reign for ever and ever. 19 For the horse of Pharaoh went in with his chariots and with his horsemen into the sea, and the LORD brought again the waters of the sea upon them; but the children of Israel went on dry land in the midst of the
20 And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances.
21 And Miriam answered them, Sing ye to the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously; the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.
5 Deut. 2. 25. Josh. 2. 9.
6 That is, bitterness.
8 Num. 33.9.
Verse 4. "Pharaoh...and his host."-As this is the first mention of an organized military force, a few considerations on the general subject and the military state of Egypt will not be misplaced. When societies were first established and men began to act in common, the first warlike operations do not appear to have been for purposes of conquest, but were mere incursions to acquire spoil and do as much mischief as possible. Such was the first military operation which the Scripture records (Gen. xiv.), and we have there traced its essential identity with the warlike undertakings of the barbarians of Asia at the present day. Yet wars of conquest would seem to have been known previously to that period, for Chedorlaomer had before that rendered the kings of the plain tributary, and it was to punish their rebellion that his expedition was undertaken. But when a considerable number of families became associated under one sovereign, views of ambition and schemes for extending dominion began to be entertained; and, in warlike enterprises, more permanent advantages than those which result from a successful incursion were desired. This certainly tended to mitigate the horrors of war, as the object was not to exterminate or ruin, but to subdue. The conquest was the more valuable in proportion as it remained uninjured in the act of acquisition. How troops were raised in the earliest ages for military undertakings, there is no precise evidence to show. But Goguet, whom we are chiefly following in this part, thinks, with good reason, that every one went to the wars without distinction, except aged men, children, and women. Subsequently, as the population increased, a selection was made of such men as were more robust and best able to endure fatigue: and ultimately the plan was devised of allotting a certain number of men wholly to the profession of arms. This scheme of having a certain number of men always disciplined to prevent surprise, and to be in readiness for any urgent enterprise, must have been the invention of some civilized and settled nation; and if it was not invented by the Egyptians, it is certainly among that extraordinary people that we first discover its existence. The most ancient Greek authors describe a certain proportion of land as having from time immemorial been set apart for the subsistence of the military; and the sacred narrative so far agrees with this, as to show that Egypt possessed in the most ancient times an organized military force. The narrative before us is, however, sufficiently explicit on this subject. The king no sooner heard of the march of the Israelites from Etham, than he pursued with a large army of both horse and foot. The quickness with which this was done, necessarily implies that a large force was constantly maintained, ready to march wherever occasion called. This leads us to state a few particulars concerning the military arrangements of the ancient Egyptians, as known to us through the Greek writers.
Their warlike force consisted of a numerous militia, which formed a tribe or caste by itself, in which the military occupation was hereditary, and which, although far below, was next to the priestly tribe in authority and privileges. This militia was divided into two bodies, the Hermotybi and the Calasari: the former, at the time of their greatest power, consisted of 160,000 men, and the latter of 250,000. For their subsistence, they had possession of certain nomes or districts, which Herodotus mentions by name. No soldier had any pay, but every man had an estate of about twelve acres. The landed property of the soldiers, like that of the king and priests, was generally let out to farmers, who paid the proprietors a certain rent. The military were not allowed to carry on any business; but it does not seem that they were precluded from cultivating their own grounds if they thought proper. Each of the great military divisions furnished a thousand men to compose the king's personal guard. The men were changed every year, and during their period of service they were allowed good rations of bread, meat, and wine. We know little concerning the internal organization, the tactics, and discipline of the Egyptian army. It seems that the king held the privilege of commanding the army; that the right was the post of honour, and that those soldiers who quitted their post, or were disobedient, were marked with infamy, but were enabled by good conduct to recover the standing they had lost. The equipments of the foot soldiers will be seen from the cut, after a plate in the great work on Egypt. The cavalry and war-chariots have been separately noticed. The Egyptian infantry, in all paintings of battles, are readily distinguished from the adverse party by their want of beards and short dresses, as well as by their arms. They are represented with shields, square at one end and round at the other, and their offensive arms are generally a bow and arrow, and sometimes swords and spears.
Verse 10. "Lead.”—The specific gravity of lead being somewhat more than 11, that is, eleven times heavier than water, its rapid descent when thrown into that fluid is pointed at in this sublime poem as representing the unchecked impetus with which the host of Pharaoh sank at the return of the waters. It is probable that a piece of lead was fastened to the end of the sounding-line in the time of Moses, as it is at this day, whence the comparison becomes more striking and natural.
22. "They went out into the wilderness of Shur.”—The term "desert of Shur" was, as we have seen, applied to the western portion, and, in a large sense, to the whole, of the desert between Palestine and Egypt, therefore extending across the peninsula of Sinai on the north. Here the denomination is applied so as to show that it was extended into the peninsula, at least to some distance down on the eastern shore of the Red Sea. It is possible, however, that the denomination "wilderness of Shur," as applied here, was an independent designation for this part of the eastern shore, being perhaps the district near a town or village of that name. To this day there is, nearly opposite the bay of Badea, the bed of a winter-torrent which is called Wady Sdur, and the coast to some distance northward also bears the name of Sdur. It is fair therefore to infer that the Hebrews emerged from the bed of the gulf somewhere between Wady Sdur and Ras Mousa. Indeed the necessary breadth of the opening made for their passage would have obliged them to have spread over a considerable part of the extent between the two points, which are distant about fifteen miles from each other. It should be observed that the coast hereabouts is as low and sandy as that which they had left is rugged and mountainous.
23. "Marah.”—The Israelites wandered three days in the wilderness before they came to Marah; but as we do not know that there were three complete days' journey, nor what distance made a day's journey for such a numerous and encumbered host, and are also not quite assured of the point from which to begin the computation, we are allowed a considerable latitude in looking for Marah. Proceeding, then, along the coast south by east, over a plain alternately gravelly, stony, and sandy, we find the country begins to be hilly, with sand-hills near the coast, and at last come to the barren bed of a winter-torrent, called Wady Amarah (just the same in sound and meaning as Marah), a few miles south of which there is a well called Howara, which both Niebuhr and Burckhardt concur in considering to be the Marah of Scripture. It is true that these travellers agree in fixing the passage of the Red Sea at Suez, from which this spot is fifty miles distant, and forty miles from Ain Mousa. The distance from either point would be a good three-days' journey for such a body as the Hebrew host, nor would the distance be too short, if we suppose them to have started from some point between Ain Mousa and Wady Sdur. Even Dr. Shaw, who places the starting point at or below Wady Sdur, does not fix Marah more than a few miles below Howara. We may therefore consider the evidence for Howara as good as for any place that has yet been indicated. The well there lies among rocks about a hundred paces out of the road, and its water is so bitter that men cannot drink it, and even camels, unless very thirsty, refuse to tasté
Ton (near ELIM?).-V. 27.
it. It occurs on the customary road along the coast from Suez to Sinai, and Burckhardt observes that there is no other well absolutely bitter on the whole coast so far as Ras Mohammed at the extremity of the peninsula. He adds: "The complaints of the bitterness of the water by the children of Israel, who had been accustomed to the sweet water of the Nile, are such as may be daily heard from the Egyptian peasants and servants who travel in Arabia. Accustomed from their youth to the excellent water of the Nile, there is nothing they so much regret in countries distant from Egypt; nor is there any eastern people who feel so keenly the want of good water as the present natives of Egypt." (Tour in the Peninsula of Mount Sinai."')
25. "The LORD shewed him a tree, which when he had cast into the waters, the waters were made sweet."-The use of certain plants and vegetable juices, in correcting the bad qualities of water, admits of ample illustration. It is understood that the original inducement of the Chinese to the use of tea was for the purpose of correcting the bad qualities of their water; and our early colonists in America infused in the water, for the same purpose, the branches of sassafras. (Burder's Oriental Literature,' vol. i., p. 146.) Niebuhr also, speaking of the Nile, observes, "The water is always somewhat muddy; but by rubbing with bitter almonds, prepared in a particular manner, the earthen jars in which it is kept, this water is rendered clear, light, and salutary." Mr. Roberts, in his Oriental Illustrations,' has some interesting observations concerning the practices of the Hindoos with reference to this subject. He informs us that the brackish water in the neighbourhood of the salt pans or of the sea, is often corrected by the natives throwing into it the wood called Perru-Nelli (Phylanthus emblica); and should the water be very bad, the well is lined with planks cut out of this tree. He adds: "In swampy grounds, or where there has not been rain for a long time, the water is often muddy and very unwholesome. But Providence has again been bountiful by giving to the people the Teatta Maram (Strychnos potatorum). All who live in the neighbourhood of such water, or who have to travel where it is, always carry a supply of the nuts of this tree. They grind one or two of them on the side of an earthen vessel: the water is then poured in and the impurities soon subside." (Oriental Illustrations.')
With particular reference to Marah, Burckhardt observes that he had frequently inquired among the Bedouins in different parts of Arabia, whether they possessed any means of effecting such a change by throwing wood into it, or by any other process: but he could never learn that such an art was known. This is important, because such a tree and process of rectification being locally unknown, the necessity for the divine indication of such a tree, and, possibly, of giving to it curative qualities for the occasion, becomes apparent. It shows that such trees do not exist as a common or obvious resource, or else surely their useful properties would be known to the Arabs, to whom they would be of incalculable value. These considerations neutralize the subsequent observations of Burckhardt, who, when he comes a few miles further down to the Wady Gharendel, observes that it (the Wady) contains among other trees and shrubs the thorny shrub Gharkad, the Peganum retusum of Forskal, which is extremely common in this peninsula, and is also met with in the sands of the Delta, on the coasts of the Mediterranean. "Its small red berry, of the size of the grain of the pomegranate, is very juicy and refreshing, much resembling a ripe gooseberry in taste, but not so sweet. The Arabs are very fond of it, and I was told that when the shrub produces large crops they make a conserve of the berries. The gharkad delights in a sandy soil, and reaches its maturity in the height of summer when the ground is parched up,